August 3, 2010

Tumblr Tuesday: Brick Walls and Taxi Cabs

Tuesday again?  Seriously?  Ok, I suppose I'm fine with that.  This week's Tumblr Tuesday post is:

I'm inserting the photo rather than the screen shot, because the actual post is too big for the screen shot.  (Someday I'll figure out how to fix it.  That day isn't today.)   I love this picture, because it has become a bit of a visual mantra since I uploaded it to iphoto last week.  I knew I liked the shot when I took it.  I thought it was visually diverse.  A bit of a contradiction.  I took a lot of photos that day, but I remember looking forward to uploading this one more than the others.  I'm not sure how long I looked at it before I realized I connected to it on a symbolic level.  (What else would you expect from a comp. lit. major? Uh, years ago... shhhh... don't tell anyone I still identify with my college major.  But I digress...)

The camera is focused on the brick wall and the "oncoming truck" sign.  Everything else is blurry and out of focus.  Obviously, I did this on purpose when I hit the shutter button, but I don't think I really "saw" the brick wall until I uploaded the photo. 

I have a bit of personal history with brick walls.  As in, I tend to run face-first into them when I am trying wholeheartedly to achieve something I am passionate about and it doesn't work out.  After I hit the wall, I always have to evaluate where the passion came from and better direct it.  Usually it's not the passion that led me down the path to the brick wall; it's something else that misdirected me along the way.  I know this about myself, and I wouldn't change it despite the occasional bruise, bump, scratch. 

I ran into a brick wall last fall.  I should have seen it coming, but I didn't.  I hit it pretty hard and then continued to bump up against it for a while longer than I ever wanted. 

I know this brick wall exists now.  I have my eyes glued to it, because I don't want to hit it again.  I'm focused on the brick wall.  And the fear of the oncoming truck.  You know the kind: the ones that run you down and leave your bones feeling at least four times heavier than your body mass.  I'm watching for the oncoming truck with my eyes glued to the brick wall. 

And I'm missing the other half of the picture.  The blurry, unfocused other 50% of the picture.  The taxi cab.  The bicycle. Vehicles.  Methods of movement.  I'm focusing on the brick wall with such intensity that I am dangerously close to missing movement away from the brick wall.  The bright, colorful, wind-in-my-hair, exhilarating, method of movement out and around and far, far, far away from that brick wall.

Sure, it's just a photo.  But this photo told me: I need to refocus.

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